“Acting is an interesting game to me”
is the most popular attraction of Secretly Greatly
, a screen adaptation of a popular webtoon with the same title. In the film, KIM plays WON Ryu-hwan who became an elite North Korean agent after tough training to take good care of his mother. We had an interview with KIM to let readers know more about his appeal.
- You played your first lead in this film. The role is not easy as it required you to play both an elite North Korean agent and a fool in a shantytown.
I was determined to play my first principal role well. WON is a difficult character. In particular, as for the role of a fool, I thought that it would be important what kind of a fool I would play. I tried to express a realistic character.
- It is said that you record fragmentary thoughts about your new characters in your notebook whenever you star in new films. What did you write about WON?
WON is a very strong person. Just as a big log is compressed into a strong hockey stick, WON became stronger after various experiences and tough training. He sticks to his own principles. He is a master in fighting, too. So I tried to show how WON defeats his enemies not with brilliant action but with simple moves.
- Are you also strong and stubborn man?
I am not that strong and stubborn. It can be said that I mix well with the people around me. While shooting this film, I felt that I absorbed some of WON's characteristics. Whenever I play a new role, I feel like I obtain a new card. I think that while collecting such cards, I can use one of the cards when I take on a similar role or create a new character by mixing the cards. Therefore, acting feels like an exciting game.
- Did you feel any new responsibility by taking on the lead role?
When I played Jampano in The Thieves
, I felt that I was building a small bell tower for a gigantic sand castle. During the shooting of Secretly Greatly
, the other actors and actresses built their towers and I bridged them, I think. Director JANG Cheol-soo
checked whether or not the castle was properly built.
- As an actor, what kind of compliment do you like most?
I invited CHOI Dong-hoon
, director of The Thieves
to the VIP preview of Secretly Greatly
. It was in 2011 that I shot The Thieves
with CHOI. At that time, I was the youngest among the actors and actresses. After The Thieves
and a TV series, I played the leading part in Secretly Greatly
. I wanted to show my acting to CHOI. We held a small party after the preview. “I wasn't bored even though you continuously appear throughout the film,” director CHOI said in the party. I was very happy to hear that. So I drank a lot. (laughs)
- What did you learn through Secretly Greatly?
I gained alot of shooting experience as a leading actor. In addition, I made friends with many people just as I did when I shot The Thieves. Finally, I hope that Secretly Greatly will become a huge box office hit.
- Are you satisfied with your life as a 25-year-old young man?
Well, I need more time to do so. Last year, I became famous overnight thanks to the immense popularity of a TV series. At the same time, I became burdened with more responsibility. That made me passive. Like a coward I hated going outside. I hated myself. Now I am adapting myself to people’s attention. I'm trying to make myself better. I withdrew myself from the Drama and Cinema Department of Chung-Ang University last year. This spring semester, I came back to school. I felt that I changed a lot while meeting my friends.
- Please tell us about your change.
In the past, I liked to take the lead and was talkative. Now, I feel comfortable about watching friends in the back in a lecture room. I am shy when I meet freshmen, too. I am ashamed about it. (Laughs)
photographed by KIM Kyung-bin